Rafael Nadal's win at the US Open has re-opened debate suggesting he can catch Roger Federer's stunning haul of grand slams.
Federer, 36, won the Australian Open and Wimbledon this year to take his unbelievable tally of grand slams to 19.
He is the most successful player in the history of men's tennis but the 31-year-old Nadal is breathing down his neck.
Retired American legend Pete Sampras won 14 grand slams but Nadal is now 2nd in the all-time list with 16 grand slams, following 2017 victories at Roland Garros and the US Open.
Nadal has been plagued by injuries but, like Federer, has enjoyed a huge upturn in fortunes this year and his fans believe he can catch Federer's amazing 19 grand slam haul.
However, the Spanish superstar has played down the chances of him catching his Laver Cup doubles teammate.
Asked if it really wasn’t an aim to catch Federer’s total, Nadal told El Espanol: "The truth is, no.
"For me, it was not a challenge to be number one this year and now it can become a goal to try to finish the season in that position after all that has happened.
"What about Federer? Right now it is neither a challenge nor a goal. I wish it were in the future, and then it would become [a reality].
"I am happy with what I do, I am focused on my career and I do not care much about others."
Nadal had previously suggested it was possible to chase down his rival, but refused to get ahead of himself.
"Yes it’s possible [to catch Federer] but it’s very difficult," he said. "Between saying and doing it, there is a lot of difference."
Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray are expected to come back stronger in 2018 so Nadal will have to be at the very top of his game to run Federer's record down.
On top of that, Federer - despite his age - looks more than capable of adding more to his trophy collection.
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